New twist to land dispute case

Charge-sheet filed against Tushar Nath Bhattacharjee, sister; High Court for mediation

SHILLONG: In a new twist to the land dispute case between senior advocate SP Mahanta and the non-resident Indian Tushar Nath Bhattacharjee, a charge sheet was filed by the police after-re-investigation against  Bhattacharjee (76) and his elder sister Sujata Bezbaruah (83) even as the High Court of Meghalaya had suggested out of court settlement through mediation.
The charge-sheet was filed by the investigation officer Belario R Marak from Nongthymmai Beat House before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Shillong on April 13 stating that the duo was involved in breach of trust, criminal intimidation, defamation, forgery and cheating among others while entering into the agreement to sell property of around 14, 285 square feet at Lower Lachumiere.
The charge-sheet was based on the FIR lodged by Vennetta Kharsyntiew , wife of Mahanta in 2011 against  Bhattacharjee for allegedly pointing finger at her  from the road, and using abusive language with a threat to kill her and her family members.
Earlier on December 18 last year, the investigation officer of Laitumkhrah police station had also filed another charge-sheet against Sujata Bezbaruah together with Mahanta and his wife under various sections of  IPC including forgery, concealing the truth and impersonation among others . The charge sheet was based on the FIR lodged by Bhattacharjee in 2005.
In another verdict related to the land dispute, the full Bench of the High Court of Meghalaya after hearing a review petition filed by Mahanta, observed that it “would be open for the parties to take an attempt for settlement before the High Court Mediation Centre before May 8 which is the next date of hearing”.
Agreeing to the proposal of the High Court, a letter was submitted by Vennetta Kharsyntiew on April 16 to the Registrar General, High Court of Meghalaya, sources said.
It is yet o be known whether other affected parties Bhattacharjee, and his two sisters Sujata Bezbaruah and Sabita Goswami  expressed interest in settling the case through the High Court Mediation Centre as the Court said  that  no further  adjournment will  be granted after May 8  for any such exercise.
The fresh charge-sheet of April 13 this year was the result of the FIR lodged at  Laitumkhrah police station on February 3, 2011 which  stated that  Sujata  along with her brother,  Bhattacharjee had deceived her with  mala fide  intention of  cheating  by  selling  the property comprising of 14,285 sq ft  situated at Lower Lachumiere  and the duo had taken  Rs 4,30,000 out of the agreed amount of Rs 12,00,000 for sale on June 8, 1992.
The FIR said that for making payment of remaining amount of over Rs7,00,000 on or before  June 13, 1992,  an amicable  settlement was arrived at the  chamber of Senior Advocate S R Sen by Bhattachajee and his family members.  However, this was not followed up.
Moreover, the FIR alleged that on February 3, 2011, Bhattacharjeee had pointed finger at Kharsyntiew, and threatened which compelled her to file the complaint.
After seizing several documents, the Investigation officer  Belario R Marak   observed in his charge sheet that Sujata and  Bhattacharjee after taking money from complainant  Kharsyntiew for the same landed property  also took money from T S Bareh with the intention to cheat her  resulting  in breach of trust, and the same was also supported by the legal notice dated 22.6.92 given under their instruction by Advocate S R Sen. “It is also clearly indicated that Sujata Bezbaruah and TN Bhattacharjee have cheated the complainant by trying to sell the  property to (L) T S Bareh for getting wrongful gain which are supported by  documents”, the investigation officer in his charge sheet filed before CJM on April 13 this year said.
The Investigation Officer also sent the handwriting and specimen signature of Bhattacharjee  and Sujata to Director FSL for comparison.

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